Cream Cheese Lemon Crumb Cake

I was expecting a few friends over one morning for a little coffee and conversation. I wanted to serve a coffee cake, but also something light and creamy, and that’s when I stumbled upon this perfect crumble cake that would do just the trick. It’s impossible to go wrong with a trifecta of sweetened cream cheese, crumbly topping, and moist, chewy cake. It’s easy to make the cake from scratch, but we chose to take a little shortcut and use a pre-made cake mix.
Everyone loved the refreshing combination of sweet cream cheese infused with citrusy lemon. Other than this informal gathering between friends, I also like to make this cake for a special occasion or holiday (or Mondays to combat those beginning of the week blues). Really, no special occasion is needed to whip up a delicious treat. After sharing with family and friends, any leftover slices taste even better as a late night snack!

1 (15 oz) box lemon cake mix
1 cup water
3 large eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons lemon zest
For the filling/frosting:
2 tablespoons lemon juice
16 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
For the crumble:
3/4 cup flour
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup unsalted butter, cold

Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease two 9-inch round cake pans with butter or cooking spray.
In a large bowl, beat cake mix with water, eggs, lemon zest, and oil. Pour batter into cake pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool cakes completely.
To make cream cheese filling: Beat together cream cheese, 1/2 cup heavy cream, powdered sugar, vanilla, and lemon juice until creamy.
In medium bowl, make crumble topping by mixing together flour, sugar, vanilla, and cold butter. Use a fork to cut mixture into crumbles.
Once cake cools, remove from pan and slice it in half horizontally. Pour enough cream cheese filling mixture to cover cut side of cake. Replace cake top. Spread a layer of cream cheese frosting over top of cake. Sprinkle top with prepared crumble. Chill at least 30 minutes before serving. Repeat for 2nd cake.

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